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Old 21st January 2016, 13:49
Laurent Rizzotti Laurent Rizzotti is offline
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NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Hello,

I am researching the loss of a Bf 110 off Netherlands on 21 January 1942.

Michael Balss book on NJG losses (vol 1) has the following:
21.1.1942
6./NJG 2
Nordsee PQ 43194
Feindflug: ja
Bf 110 D-3 Werknr.: 4209 R4+CN
Uffz. K. Zipperlein gefallen
Gefr. W. Schunter gefallen
Absturz nach Luftkampf

The Verliesregister of the air losses in Netherlands in 1942 has no time for this aircraft and confirms WNr, unit and pilot name, location being given as North Sea, 20 km west of Petten.

AFAIK there was no air battle during the day in the area, while Bomber Command aircraft were in the area in the evening (from the take off hours and loss times in BCL 1942). Seven of the 120 bombers dispatched by Bomber Command that night did not return: three crashed in the Netherlands and four were lost without trace (probably falling in the sea).

This https://www.deutsche-digitale-biblio...RZWC3TCEQ7UNDR shows an Uffz Kurt Zipperlein dying in an air battle over the North Sea on 21 January 1942, so I have the full name of the pilot.

I would like to have the full name of his crew, and also (if possible) some more details on his loss.

Here is what I have for the Allied activities that evening:
During the night of 21/22 January 1942, the RAF Bomber Command flew 120 sorties in the following operations:
_ 54 aircraft were dispatched to attack Bremen, but only 28 crews claimed have bombed the primary target. 2 Hampdens and 1 Wellington were lost (11 KIA, 3 POW).
_ 38 aircraft were dispatched to attack Emden. 3 Hampdens and 1 Whitley were lost (12 KIA, 5 POW).
_ 7 Wellingtons were dispatched to attack Boulogne.
_ 8 Wellingtons were dispatched to attack two airfields in Holland.
5 Wellingtons attacked Soesterberg bombs falling on a runway and near NE boundary of A/F., followed immediatly by many outbreaks of fire. The crew of the Wellington X3281 of 9 Sqn reported that when he reached it, lights were switched on and off as enemy aircraft landed. They bombed the flare path from 500 feet, dropping their bombs on concentration of lights or fires on the airfield, which they also machine gunned. They then repeatedly followed aircraft circling the base and fired at no less than seven, including two on the ground, claiming two damaged.
One Wellington (X3305 of 9 Sqn) attacked Schiphol. According to the ORB of the squadron, it bombed from 400 feet hangars and other buildings N of landing ground and machine gunned an enemy aircraft about to land. Tracers were seen to enter the aircraft which burst into flames and burnt out on ground. Three searchlights were extinghuised and one light gun emplacement silenced by MG fire. X3305 landed back to base at 2203 hrs. The front gunner of this aircraft was Flt Sgt Jack Standish Banks RCAF, who was flying his 31st sortie. He was awarded a DFM for his deeds that night, and the citation says:
"On the night of 21 January 1942 this Non-Commissioned Officer was front gunner in a Wellington aircraft detailed to carry out a low level attack on Schipol aerodrome. While approaching the aerodrome over the hangars he intercepted an enemy aircraft subsequently identified as a Dornier 217. He held his fire until the range was reduced to about 150 yards, then opened a burst when the aircraft was on the port bow and continued to fire until it was out of range on the port beam. The enemy aircraft was seen to crash in flames by the captain and the rear gunner, and is claimed as destroyed. The Wellington aircraft then proceeded to carry out its bombing run during which it was held by searchlights and height was reduced to fifty feet. Sergeant Banks succeeded by accurate fire in extinguishing two enemy searchlights and at the same time succeeded in warning the pilot who was blinded by the glare in time for him to avoid hitting the hangar."
_ 1 Hampden laid mines in the Frisians.
_ 9 Hampdens and 3 Manchesters flew leaflet flights to France.

Source:
"The Bomber Command War Diaries", by Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt, ISBN 1-85780-033-8
http://www.rijkswaterstaat.nl/apps/g...irOps42-43.pdf
"Royal Air Force Bomber Command Losses of the Second World War, vol 3: Aircraft and Crew Losses 1942", by W R Chorley. ISBN 0-904597-89-X
ORB of 9 Sqn RAF, January 1942 (AIR 27/126)
http://rcafassociation.ca/uploads/ai...LPHA-BA.1.html

The Verliesregister has no other German losses for this day that the Bf 110 of NJG 2 shown above.

In the book “Lufwaffe Night Fighter Combat Claims 1939-1945”, by John Foreman, Johannes Matthews and Simon Parry. ISBN 0-9538061-4-6, an Uffz. Zipperlein of 4./NJG 1 claimed a Whitley V shot down at 2215 hrs on 15 January 1942 at Achtkarspelen. It was the Whitley V Z9424 of 51 Sqn according to Chorley. Websources give the full name of the Luftwaffe pilot as Kurt Zipperlein.

That is all I have, so here are my questions
_ can someone give the full name of Gefr. W. Schunter ?
_ can someone give more details about this loss (time, or time of take-off) ?
_ can someone confirm that Uffz Kurt Zipperlein belonged to 4./NJG 1 on 15 January 1942 and was lost with 6./NJG 2 six days later ? As II./NJG 2 was created by renaming 4./NJG 1 and adding two new staffeln, I wonder if Zipperlein was not with NJG 2 for both instances but the paperwork for his claim with filled with a document bearing his old unit ?
_ can someone provide an ID for the "Do 217" shot at while landing at Schipol, or provide a view from this attack from the ground ?

Thanks in advance
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Old 21st January 2016, 14:13
Matti Salonen Matti Salonen is offline
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Re: NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Werne Schunter.

I have location Pl.Qu. 43194.

Also, for some reason, I have the code R4+JP.

I cannot find any Do 217 loss in Netherlands on 21 January 1942, only two in UK.

Matti
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  #3  
Old 21st January 2016, 16:23
Hans Nauta Hans Nauta is offline
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Re: NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Hi Laurent,

Hope to have some answers for you:
- full name is Werner Schunter
- no time of take off or loss known as the part of the KTB Flughafenbereich Amsterdam covering that date is missing
- as far as I know II/NJG2 was formed from 4./NJG1 at 1st November 1941. On 15th January 1942 Uffz Zipperlein must have been at 6./NJG2. Using old forms may be a plausible explanation
- No Do 217 was lost that date, the nose gunner probably shot up a wooden mock-up at a dummy airfield. A kind of rail track system was used for a dummy aircraft, resembling a taxiing or landing aircraft. I do have another report which states that the rounds were observed to go through the enemy aircraft, what matches with the situation of a wooden dummy.

The Interception and Tactics Reports of Bomber Command don't contain an entry what can be linked with the loss of the Bf 110. The Raid Track of that night shows that the route of 1 and 2 Group was right across the place where Uffz Zipperlein's Bf 110 was lost. No aircraft 1 or 2 Group were lost, but Wellington DV515 of 311 Squadron of 3 Group was lost without trace. It might be possible that both Bf 110 and Wellington collided during the attack or happened to be shot down simultaneously...

Perhaps Theo Boiten may be able to add something.

Regards,
Hans

Last edited by Hans Nauta; 21st January 2016 at 16:40. Reason: correction
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  #4  
Old 21st January 2016, 17:04
Theo Boiten Theo Boiten is online now
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Re: NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Hi guys,

I have carefully checked if I can add anything to this thread, but Hans and Matti have summed up the facts well. Balss corrected the a/c code in his book Deutsche Nachtjagd Materialverluste in Ausbildung und Einsatz page 50, the right code reading: R4+JP. He also added the Planquadrant 43194 which is 15 km west of Petten.

Another thought: Hans suggested that Zipperlein may have been lost in a combat with 311 Squadron Wellington DV515, but could this perhaps also have been 408 Sqn Hampden X3051 (which was also posted as 'lost without a trace')?

Cheers, Theo
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Old 21st January 2016, 18:20
Hans Nauta Hans Nauta is offline
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Re: NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Hi Theo and Laurent,

Hampden X3051 may indeed be a better candidate to have been the opponent of Uffz Zipperlein.

The Raid Track map doesn't show 5 Group routes, but according to the description with way points most Hampdens passed the position where the Bf 110 was lost.

Apart from that another entry in the same report reads that the lost 3 Group Wellington (=DV515 of 311 Sqdn) was believed to be down in the sea 20 miles SE of Orfordness, which is too far away from the location where the Bf 110 was lost.

So, I agree with Theo that actually X3051 may have been involved in the encounter.

Regards,
Hans

P.S. This is not an unique incident. A few months later, on 28 March 1942, Fw Ney and a Hampden went down together at about the same location.
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Old 21st January 2016, 19:40
Theo Boiten Theo Boiten is online now
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Re: NJG loss off Netherlands on 21 January 1942 (and a possible other loss)

Hi Hans,

Thanks for the convincing new evidence! Cheers, Theo
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